University of Surrey - Guildford

Registry > Module Catalogue
View Module List by A.O.U. and Level  Alphabetical Module Code List  Alphabetical Module Title List  Alphabetical Old Short Name List  View Menu 
2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: SOCM020 Module Title: THEORY AND METHOD
Module Provider: Sociology Short Name: SOCM01
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: COOPER G Dr (Sociology)
Number of credits: 15 Number of ECTS credits: 7.5
Module Availability
Autumn semester
Assessment Pattern

Components of Assessment
Percentage Weighting
One 2000 word essay based on one of the course core themes
15 credits

Module Overview
Module Aims

The course aims to

  • provide students with an understanding of the relationship between sociological theory and method in social research; 
  • introduce some basic issues in the philosophy of social science; 
  • give students an insight into the ways in which theoretical frameworks inform, or are presupposed by, certain forms of analysis; 
  • critically reflect on assumptions about social research.
Learning Outcomes
Module Content

The course will address a range of issues and topics including :

  • Interpretation and explanation
  • The relationship between social scientific and lay accounts
  • Categorisation and identity
  • Issues bearing on the scientific status of social research
  • The social construction of knowledge
  • Critical and descriptive social research
  • Feminist social research
  • Reflexivity
Methods of Teaching/Learning
Selected Texts/Journals

Selected references 

Boltanski, L and Thevenot, L (2006) On Jusification, Princeton University Press

 Delamont, S (2003) Feminist Sociology, Sage.

 Delanty, G and Strydom, P (eds) (2003) Philosophies of Social Science, Open University Press.

 Garfinkel, H (2002) Ethnomethodology’s  Program, Rowman and Littlefield.

 Geertz, C (2000) Available Light, Princeton .

 Harvey , L (1990) Critical Social Research, Unwin Hyman.

 Hughes, J and Shorrock, W (1997) The Philosophy of Social Research, Longman.

 McCarl-Nielsen, J (1990) Feminist Research Methods,  Westview Press.

 Rabinow, P (ed) (1986) The Foucault Reader, Penguin.

 Silverman, D (1993) Interpreting Qualitative Data, Sage

 Smith, D (1990) Texts, Facts and Femininity, Routledge.

 Steier, F (1991) Research and Reflexivity, Sage.

 Williams, M and May, T (1996) Introduction to the Philosophy of Social Research, UCL Press.


Last Updated
27th August 2009